FINANCIAL TECHNOLOGY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Guess how many deals targeted a Hong Kong-based bank since 2008

Clue: only 2 from this year.

Data from SNL show that only eight deals where a Hong Kong-based bank was the target have been announced since 2008.

According to a report from SNL Financial, of those eight, all of the deals involved buyers from outside the island and three were investments in Bank of East Asia.

There was one deal announced in each year between 2008 and 2013. However, there have been two deals announced in 2014 as of Sept. 8.

Here's more from SNL Financial:

Singapore-based Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. Ltd. purchased Hong Kong-based Wing Hang Bank Ltd. for HK$37.29 billion in July, which was the largest deal, based on available deal terms, since 2008.

Tokyo-based Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. also said it would acquire a 7.90% stake in Bank of East Asia on Sept. 5 which will increase its stake in the bank to 17.50%.

This will be the Japanese bank's second share buy in the Hong Kong lender over the past three years.

Earlier Sumitomo acquired a 5.01% stake in the bank in 2012, increasing its share to 9.50% at that time.

Hong Kong's economy picked up the pace in 2013 as real GDP grew 2.93% that year, compared to 1.55% in 2012. However, this was still lower than the 6.77% growth in 2010 and 4.79% in 2011.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit Ltd., annual GDP growth is expected to be 3.75% and 3.84% in 2014 and 2015, respectively.

Hong Kong's median household income increased by 25.2% to HK$349,000 in 2013 from HK$279,000 in 2005, while its unemployment rate fell to 3.35% from 5.69% during the same period.

However, inflation has picked up as the consumer price growth rate hit 4.33% in 2013, compared to only 0.91% in 2005.

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